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Odimegwu sacked as Nigerian Breweries MD

Category: People

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Odimegwu sacked as Nigerian Breweries MD

November 17, 2006/thisday & tribune


The Managing Director of Nigerian Breweries Plc, Mr. Festus Odimegwu, yesterday finally succumbed to pressure to bow out of the company’s services.

In a forced letter addressed to the Board of Directors, Odimegwu told the Board of his decision to step down from his current role, in order to pursue other interests outside the business.

Nigerian Breweries, in its response, announced it has accepted his (Odimegwu’s) decision to step down from his current role adding that a new Managing Director will be appointed before end of March 2007.

The company explained that pending the appointment of a new Managing Director, Mr. Paul Hamers will continue as interim Managing Director of Nigerian Breweries Plc.

Hamers had stepped into this role five months ago when Odimegwu was said to have gone on an executive development programme in the United States.

Corporate Communication Adviser, NB, Mr. Chuma Igwe stated that following the completion of the senior executive development programme, it was intended that Odimegwu would return to a role within the Heineken company, however, he has elected to remain in Nigeria in order to pursue other interests outside the business.

Odimegwu, whose role in the third term project championed by some private sector players attracted the ire of shareholders of the company, had been on a Senior Executive Development Programme in the United States of America since.

A release signed by Chuma Igwe, Corporate Communication Adviser, Nigerian Breweries, stated that “following the completion of the Senior Executive Development Programme in the United States of America, it was intended that Mr. Odimegwu would return to a role within the Heineken company. However, he has elected to remain in Nigeria in order to pursue other interests outside the business. 

The release further added that Mr. Paul Hamers, who had been acting as the MD since May, would continue in that role pending the appointment of a substantive MD in March 2007. Hamers has been a board member of Nigerian Breweries since 1998.

Tom de Man, Regional President, Heineken Africa and the Middle East, while commenting on the decision of Odimegwu to leave the company, said “In his 26 years with the company, Festus has made a significant contribution to the growth of the Nigerian Breweries business, particularly during his seven years as the Managing Director.

“In addition, thanks to his determination to modernise the business, Festus was one of the driving forces behind the construction of one of the world’s most advanced breweries in Ama. This will be a lasting and fitting tribute to his passion and vision for Nigerian Breweries.

“During his tenure of office, NB Plc won five times the Heineken Gold Africa Beer Award. He leaves the company with the genuine thanks and best wishes of all members of the Nigerian Breweries Board and the Heineken NV management team. 

Odimegwu, who is 53 years old, joined Nigerian Breweries in August 1980. He was, at various times, Brewery Manager and Sales and Customer Service Manager before becoming the Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer.

He also held various roles within the UAC Group. These included Food and Co-ordination Manager, UK and Marketing Manager, Ghana. –

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